What Have You Done Today To Make You Feel Proud?
Today I was part of the 2 million plus, public sector workers who went on strike.
(A sign of the times is the protest had it's own twitter hashtag, #N30.)
I wasn't just striking for myself and fellow teachers, I also had the Armed services, Fire service and Police service at the back of my mind who don't have the option.
The police in particular are being shafted by a government that nobody voted for, and in my opinion have no mandate to enforce such money grabbing changes.
It is widely known that all the extra money we are being forced to pay 'towards our gilt edged pensions' won't be going anywhere near our pension funds.
There is enough money to keep them going for many, many years, having been renegotiated as recently as 2008.
The extra money is going to be poured into the deficit that not one single public sector worker contributed to.
It was interesting when the right wing press trotted out the tired old argument that many Private sector workers have much shoddier pensions than us, so we should be thankful (for having to pay an extra £80 a month, for maybe 7 more years, to get thousands of pounds less each year when we retire).
The fact that many Private sector workers don't have pension schemes, or choose not to pay into one, isn't a reason for us to race to the bottom , we should be trying to improve the pensions for all, both Private and Public sector.
This evening I enjoyed listening to prominent members of the government wringing their hands as they wept crocodile tears because millions of people had been inconvenienced.
The country had apparently been shown in a bad light meaning foreign business would choose not to come here, many millions of pounds had been lost in productivity, working parents had been forced to stay at home and (I'm slightly stretching the point here), the poor little kiddies would now miss out on their chance to take up an Oxbridge place due to the gaps in their learning.
Strangely, with all the above in mind, today was also described as a 'damp squib' where people hardly noticed the protest!
I'm proud to have been on strike today and proud to have stood up for what I believe in.